Daily Archives: February 12, 2012

Udder hysteria over raw milk dangers?

From the Hanover Evening Sun:

“As we sat down here to write, we were all ready to pour ourselves a nice tall, cold one. A big glass of raw milk. Surely, something that nutritious and natural couldn’t really be harmful.

Then, our research led us to the websites of the Centers for Disease Control and the Food and Drug Administration.

Whew. It’s a wonder we’re even around to have this discussion.

Considering all the dangers associated with raw milk, and considering that pasteurization didn’t become widespread until the 1950s, it’s a miracle that our parents and grandparents ever survived childhood. Continue reading

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The American way of eating — is all that healthy local food only for the well off?

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“What if you cant afford nine-dollar tomatoes? That was the question award-winning journalist Tracie McMillan couldnt escape as she watched the debate about Americas meals unfold, one that urges us to pay foods true cost—which is to say, pay more. So in 2009 McMillan embarked on a groundbreaking undercover journey to see what it takes to eat well in America. For nearly a year, she worked, ate, and lived alongside the working poor to examine how Americans eat when price matters.

From the fields of California, a Walmart produce aisle outside of Detroit, and the kitchen of a New York City Applebees, McMillan takes us into the heart of Americas meals. With startling intimacy she portrays the lives and food of Mexican garlic crews, Midwestern produce managers, and Caribbean line cooks, while also chronicling her own attempts to live and eat on meager wages. Along the way, she asked the questions still facing America a decade after the declaration of an obesity epidemic: Why do we eat the way we do? And how can we change it? To find out, McMillan goes beyond the food on her plate to examine the national prio-rities that put it there. With her absorbing blend of riveting narrative and formidable investigative reporting, McMillan takes us from dusty fields to clanging restaurant kitchens, linking her work to the quality of our meals—and always placing her observations in the context of Americas approach not just to farms and kitchens but to wages and work. Continue reading

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Speculators don’t take kindly to limits on driving up food prices for profit

From Edward Miller, on Civil Eats, where it’s  titled “The Empire Strikes Back”:

“On December 2, 2011, two of Wall Street’s top lobby groups launched an assault on a newly reinstated “position limits” regulation, which aims to curb speculation in commodity futures markets–and a key factor behind rising food prices–in the first ever case brought against the Commodity Future Trading Commission (CFTC).

The two lobby groups, the Security Industry and Financial Markets Association and theInternational Swaps and Derivatives Association have challenged the extremely controversialposition limits rule, which the CFTC passed in a narrow 3-2 vote this October. Wall Street has recruited the lawfirm of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, whose lawyers Miguel Estrada (among Bush’s counsel in Bush v. Gore) and Eugene Scalia (who overturned a Securities and Exchange Commission rule earlier this year) are determined to hold the scepter of market regulation at bay. Continue reading

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